Paywall Partisan WSJ Launches Free iPhone App


The Wall Street Journal has launched an iPhone app and — strikingly for a company that safeguards the bulk of its online content behind a paywall — it’s free. Granted the company doesn’t charge for its Blackberry application either — and every page in the new iPhone app is underlined with a prominent ad. But don’t get too attached: A company spokesman reminded us that the “intent is to ultimately have a consistent experience across multiple platforms regarding subscription content.”

Still, the decision not to charge for the moment seems especially odd considering that News Corp (NYSE: NWS) Chairman Rupert Murdoch recently complained:


Joseph Tartakoff

I think you might be right. And with iPhone 3.0, app developers will also be able to charge for subscriptions ( So, the Journal could charge a fixed fee every month for readers to access its app, which is probably preferable than charging $5 for the app right now and then giving all the content away for free forever.

— Joe,


In 2 months, Apple will allow for in-app transactions… connect the dots.

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